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My Workspace

Image of workspace

Since covid-19 struck in 2020 I’ve worked almost exclusively from my home office, making it an area that I’ve spent most of my time in for the last 2 years. Spending this much time in one space strangely makes it a large part of my life and because of this, I spend a lot of time thinking about this area of my home and the instruments within it. I want a space to work in that allows me to work to my potential in an environment that not only allows me to focus but inspires me to sit down and design something.

Key Components

At the heart of my setup is my 14” MacBook Pro M1 Pro which I use in clamshell mode plugged into the Apple 5k Studio Display and the LG GN850-B 27" 144 Hz 1440p which I have in portrait mode. I’ve been working with one portrait monitor since the summer of 2022 and I can’t see myself switching back to a dual landscape monitor setup. I find the portrait second monitor allows me to have up to 3 windows stacked vertically with more usable ratios than the same windows on a monitor in landscape orientation. This allows me to have more productivity-focused windows such as my browser, emails or calendar open on my second monitor - whilst I design on my main monitor.

I also have a custom gaming PC that is plugged into the desk system via a KVM switch, this allows me to use the same keyboard and audio setup (more on those later) without manually unplugging everything and plugging it into the PC. The PC runs on an Nvidia 3080ti, 36 GB of DDR4 RAM and an AMD 5600x processor housed inside an NZXT 510 flow case. When I want to use the gaming PC I just simply switch the monitors over and use the LG monitor as my main for gaming due to its 180hz refresh rate, this process takes less than 5 minutes.

Peripherals

The mouse I use is a Logitech MX Master 3. This is a very popular mouse and I’ve been an avid user for a few years now. It’s not the cheapest mouse on the market but its unmatched build quality and comfortable shape make it a staple in my setup.

My keyboard is a custom mechanical keyboard which I built myself using the Keychron Q1 Knob version, pre-lubed Gateron Oil-King switches and Glorious keycaps. I love the feeling of these switches and the build quality of the Keychron Q1 is far superior to anything I had used before this. I also have a really cool USB-C cable made by Cablelab which includes an in-line YC8 Push-Pull Connector, I’ve never actually used the in-line connector but I really like the way it looks and how it perfectly matches my keyboards colour scheme.

Audio Setup

My audio setup is mainly used for consuming music and taking video calls but in 2023 I’m planning on making more video content, making the audio setup a key part of my workspace. The audio interface I’m using is the Audient EVO 4. The EVO 4 is a relatively simple USB audio interface which allows me to use my microphone, the Audio-Techina AT2040 with my MacBook and PC via an SLR cable. The microphone is mounted on the Elgato low-profile boom arm, which is neatly folded away when not in use but can easily be pulled out and under my monitor.

I love to listen to music or podcasts when working so having good-quality headphones for me is a must. When I’m at my desk I usually opt for wired headphones or IEMs over my AirPod Pros as I don’t have to worry about battery life and I prefer the higher quality sound. I rotate between using the over-ear Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pros and my IEM of choice, the Sennheiser IE300. The DT 770 deliver amazing sound, but I’m starting to prefer the weightlessness and comfort of an IEM for longer listening sessions.

Photography Setup

Although not at my desk, another key part of my work setup is my photography bag. I like having a setup that fits into a single bag and allows me to go out on a job without any constrictions. The bag I’m using is the Shimoda Explorer v2 35L, this is a hefty bag and fully loaded and weighs well over 20kg but the incredible build quality and design of the bag make it comfortable at any weight. Inside it houses 1 camera body, 3 lenses (including a telephoto), a laptop, a tripod, a full drone setup including the RC controller and 4 battery chargers as well as room to spare for other things like a notebook, water bottle and a jacket.

The camera body I’m using is the mirrorless, full-frame Canon R6 which is a great camera for photography and 4k video. Along with the R6, I carry a Canon 70-200mm f/4 L IS, Canon 16-35mm f/4 L IS and a Canon R 50mm f/1.8. The other photography gear I pack is a Peak Design Travel Tripod and the Peak Design Slide Strap.

The drone I use is a DJI Mini 3 Pro with the RC controller and Fly More kit. I’ve only had this drone for a few months at the time of writing this but so far I’m incredibly pleased with the image quality, ease-of-use and features of this tiny 249g drone. The tiny size and weight also allow me to fly in the UK without any restrictions, making it a perfect drone to throw in a backpack for aerial shots.

My setup is always getting tweaked and adjusted so check back throughout 2023 for updates. I love seeing other peoples workspaces and home offices so if you've shared your in a post or on socials or have any cool suggestions for things you think would improve my setup, get in touch via Twitter or email me at hi@liammews.com.